The Oldest Ongoing Tradition of Art in the World Essay

2324 WordsApr 30, 201410 Pages
Australian Indigenous art is the oldest ongoing tradition of art in the world. Initial forms of artistic Aboriginal expression were rock carvings, body painting and ground designs, which date back more than 30,000 years. The quality and variety of Australian Indigenous art produced today reflects the richness and diversity of Indifenous culture and distinct differences between tribes, languages, dialects and geographic landscapes. Art has always been an important of Aboriginal life, connection past and present, the people and the land, and the supernatural and reality. More often than not, Australia’s Indigenous art is described as the oldest surviving art tradition in the world, yet categorizing the history of its production as art…show more content…
Through these pieces of art, we understand an increasing drama that was beyond their control, and that had a devastating effect on their lives. “But this may be adopting to European a view on art as representation. Painting was also a means of bringing objects under control, incorporating them within Aboriginal ways of understanding the world and making them part of Aboriginal universe.” Paddy Fordham Wainburranga applies this idea in “How World War II began” (1990, Canberra) : planes, Western people, Aborigines, birds are painted on wood. He found a way to incorporate outsiders (the Europeans with their boat and planes, cattle, horses and guns into Aborigines rather than being themselves dissolved into invaders history). Paintings occasionally represent scenes from the ancestral past, for exemple the Djang’kawu giving birth (p74). Mawalan Marika illustrated the creation of Aborigines, an “magnificently conveys the creative powers of the ancestral women as children to appear to cascade from their bombs, bringing abundance and fertility to the land” (p73). Indeed, art established a line of connection with the foundational events and enabled people to maintain contact with the spiritual dimension of existence. In Queensland Museum, Brisbane, the untitled painting (p179) of Angus Namponan (1976), produced in Aurukun, represent three panels, each one associated to a site in Australia. “The painting as a whole uses

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